23 March 2017
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  • 23/03/2017 - PALESTINE – ISRAEL

    More than a thousand families applied for Israeli citizenship in 2016, up from 69 in 2003. However, red tape is an obstacle and more than half of all applications are rejected. Israel’s hold over the city is getting stronger with more settlements. Behind the trend is a desire to lead a normal life and avoid the fear of losing residency rights.




    23/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: if you do not listen to the Word of God, you end up confusing God with the devil


    "When a people, a community, even a Christian community, a parish, a diocese, close their ears and become deaf to the Word of the Lord, they look for other voices, other lords, and end up with the idols, idols of the world, the worldliness, that society offers them. They walk away from the living God. "


    23/03/2017 - ASIA - ISLAM - GREAT BRITAIN

    Indian Church praying for the victims of London attack. The sympathy of world leaders


    Cardinal Gracias expresses deep sorrow for an attack that caused a "senseless loss of life." And prays God grant "peace, strength and consolation." Sympathy and solidarity from international leaders. Iran asks to stop the sale of the "weapons to terrorist groups ". Erdogan expresses solidarity with the British, but launches a new attack on Europe.


    23/03/2017 - SYRIA - UN

    Geneva, fifth round of talks on Syria begin. Few hopes for peace


    Government delegates and opposition representatives present at the meeting. There will be no "direct" talks and positions appear more and more distant. Recent clashes in the capital have raised tensions. The UN special envoy on visit to Ankara, Riyadh and Moscow to mediate an agreement.


    22/03/2017 - HOLY LAND

    For Jerusalem Churches, restoration of the aedicule of the Holy Sepulchre is symbol of brotherhood and co-operation


    An ecumenical ceremony marked the reopening of the aedicule. Representatives of the Franciscan community, Greek Orthodox and Armenian Churches spoke at the event. Mgr Pizzaballa also spoke. Pope Francis donated money for the restoration of the Holy Sepulchre and the basilica in Bethlehem. Bartholomew I, Patriarch of Constantinople, expressed his gratitude.


    22/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Protect water, a common good, also by enhancing the cultural and religious significance


    The Word of God "feeds a hope that concrete results in sharing in mutual service." "Our hope is not based on our own strength or means, but on the support of God and the faithfulness of His love, that is, on God's strength and consolation of God." "That of migrants is the biggest tragedy since the Second World War".


    22/03/2017 - MIDDLE EAST - UNITED STATES

    Washington and London prohibit and tablets and pc on flights from Africa and the Middle East


    The measure will enter into force on 25 March and does not have a end date. Threats from the Yemeni al Qaeda cell behind the ban, ready for new attacks. Experts and analysts raise doubts about its real effectiveness.


    21/03/2017 - TURKEY – EUROPEAN UNION

    Europe and Turkish opposition worried by Erdogan's constitution and totalitarian threat

    by Luca Galantini

    The row between Berlin and Ankara gets worse after Erdogan’s Nazi comparison. The pro-government newspaper Güneş published a photo of a Hitler-like Merkel. Turkish authorities arrest a thousand Kurdish activists on the eve of Nowruz ahead of the 16 April poll. A scholar and academic offers his thoughts about the reform and its consequences.


    21/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope tells young people to remember the past, to have courage in the present and hope for the future


    The Message for the 32nd World Youth Day was issued today centred on “The ‘great things’ that the Almighty accomplished’.” In her meeting with Elizabeth, Mary becomes a model. The pontiff calls on young people to avoid being couch potatoes, safe and cosy, urges them to rediscover the relationship with seniors. The Church experience is not a flash mob. The future should be experienced in a constructive way, and “the institutions of marriage, consecrated life and priestly mission” should not be devalued.


    21/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: the forgiveness of sins "is a mystery" and the first step is shame


    Forgiveness received from God, "the wonder he created in your heart" must be able to "enter into your consciousness." "We ask for the grace of shame before God. It 'a great grace! Ashamed of our sins and thus we receive forgiveness and the grace of generosity to give it to others because if the Lord has forgiven me so much, who am I not to forgive? ".

     


    21/03/2017 - IRAQ

    Mosul government advance continues, over 180 thousand civilians flee the western area


    Most of the displaced have found their home in the refugee camps or in shelters set up in recent weeks. Worried about the fate of those trapped in the Old City. UN sources: No food, water, electricity, and medicine. Up to 320 thousand people ready to flee. About 2 thousand jihadists of the Islamic State still operating in the area.


    20/03/2017 - EGYPT - VATICAN

    Work begins on program for Pope Francis visit to Egypt


    Over the weekend a Vatican delegation meets with the Egyptian president. Al Sisi’s "great esteem" for Pope Francis. The visit to the President, the Coptic Patriarch, the Grand Imam of Al Azhar. An ecumenical meeting and prayer for the martyrs next to St. Mark's Cathedral, where three months ago a bomb attack took place. Meetings with Catholics. The press broke the news, but without comment. The silence of the Salafis.

     


    20/03/2017 - TURKEY – ARMENIA

    Istanbul governor’s interference in the election of the new Armenian Patriarch


    The city's governor says that is "legally impossible" to elect the new patriarch because it might “cause disturbance and divisions”. His statement is produced after the ‘regent’ is chosen. The latter is tasked with leading the Church until the election of the next patriarch. The government is putting pressure in favour of Erdogan’s “friendly” bishop.


    20/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: St. Joseph gives young people "the ability to dream, to take risks"


    "The man who does not speak but obeys, the man of tenderness, the man capable of keeping promises so they may become solid, safe." He is also the guardian of God’s dream": the dream of God" to save us all ", of redemption, is confided to him.

     


    20/03/2017 - ISRAEL - SYRIA - LEBANON

    Israel at war with Syria: Damascus missile defense system targeted


    Avigdor Lieberman threatens to destroy the Damascus defenses, in response to the launch of the ground-to-air missiles at an Israeli fighter jet. Air raids targeted weapons convoys destined for the Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah. Israel's army chief: "In the light" of the events in Syria and Lebanon, ready "for any kind of scenario."


    19/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Forgetful of great gift of baptism, we seek wells whose waters cannot quench our thirst


    At the Angelus Pope Francis comments on Christ’s dialogue with the Samaritan woman: "This Gospel is meant for us!". Lent opportunity to encounter Jesus "in prayer, in a heart to heart conversation, see his face in the face of a suffering brother or sister ". Solidarity with the people of Peru, hit by floods. The beatification in Bolzano of Josef Mayr-Nusser, Nazi martyr: a model for the laity and for fathers. 


    18/03/2017 - IRAN

    Mehdi Kharroubi’s son denounces: my father and my brother punished without legal basis


    Since 2011, Mehdi Kharroubi is under house arrest for participating in peaceful Green Wave protests. He was never brought to trial. Mohammed Hussein Kharrubi condemned for publishing a letter by his father.


    18/03/2017 - SAUDI ARABIA - IRAN

    Deal with Riyadh: green light for Iranian pilgrimages to Mecca


    Last year’s crisis, which blocked the travel of Iranian faithful to the Muslim holy site, seems to have been overcome. At least 80 thousand citizens of the Islamic Republic expected to participate in most important pilgrimage. Iranian Foreign Minister: "Constructive" relations with countries, including Saudi Arabia.


    17/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope leads penitential liturgy


    Francis, who did not deliver the homily, was confessed for about five minutes and then confessed, for about 50 minutes, some of the faithful. This morning he said that the confessor must pray, discern – to avoid generalising – and remember that the confessional is also a place of evangelisation, because it allows an encounter with the true face of God, which is that of mercy.


    17/03/2017 - CHINA – S. ARABIA

    Contracts for 65 billion dollars between Beijing and Riyadh

    by Wang Zhicheng

    14 agreements on energy, education, space science, finance signed. From this year the Saudi Arab has once again become the first supplier of oil to China. Riyadh within the "One belt one road project." Fears of Iran and Syria.

     


    16/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: "Cursed is the man who trusts in himself", in goods and not in the Lord


    Those who trust in riches, goods, "in the flesh" are on a dangerous road of sin, that always personalizes God, and leads to corruption, "from which there is no going back."

     


    16/03/2017 - VATICAN-LEBANON

    Pope: I will go to Lebanon and I will always remember it in my prayers


    Francis receives Lebanese President Michel Aoun, for whom "The coexistence of Lebanon occupies a special place in the heart of Pope Francis, who will respond to the invitation to visit the Land of the Cedars." Vatican appreciation for Lebanon's support to Syrian refugees.

     


    16/03/2017 - LEBANON

    Beirut, Shiite Supreme Council reawakens from years in "coma". The key role of Hezbollah

    by Pierre Balanian

    New Council elections return body to central stage after years of stalemate. In the past he fought in defense of the rights of the marginalized south and the construction of schools, hospices and medical clinics. Hezbollah uses legal-religious force to gain access to the body, until now in the hands of Amal. The process of liberation from Tehran.


     


    16/03/2017 - S. ARABIA - PAKISTAN - YEMEN

    Riyadh seeking help from Islamabad to guard the southern border with Yemen


    A brigade ready to "prop up" the fragile frontier to the south. The Pakistani army among the few in the Muslim world not of sectarian connotation. Its role as guarantor and mediator in the delicate Middle Eastern context. Growing tensions between Saudi Arabia and the Emirates on support to Yemeni President Hadi. In the background the trade relations between Tehran and Islamabad.

     


    16/03/2017 - ISRAEL - PALESTINE - UN

    UN report attacks "the apartheid regime" of Israel in the Territories. Guterres distances himself


    A CESAO, ESCWA document denounces "racial discrimination" to "dominate" the Palestinian people. Protests of the Jewish state, which speaks of an attempt to "falsify" the only "true democracy." Washington "shocked". UN spokesman: It does not reflect the view of the Secretary-General.

     


    15/03/2017 - ITALY

    Jesus teaches us how to become missionaries

    by Piero Gheddo

    The "new evangelisation" calls for a new Christian consciousness, that of having to represent Jesus to the people Christians meet. It requires overcoming the barrier of secularism, whereby talking about religious topics is seen an inappropriate, almost a taboo that prevents many from expressing the religious feeling we all carry in our hearts.


    15/03/2017 - SYRIA

    Nuncio in Damascus: The war, a "tsunami of violence" that has "swept away" families and cities


    In an interview with AsiaNews, Card. Zenari reflects on six years of conflict that have "shaken" him to the core. Suffering in solidarity with the Syrian people. The drama of broken families and a social fabric that must be rewoven. The hope that the talks in Geneva and Astana "bear fruit". The numbers of six years of conflict.


    15/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Sin of taking work from people is "very serious”


    "This work gives us dignity, and those in charge of people, leaders, have an obligation to do everything possible so that every man and every woman can work and thus hold their heads high, face others, with dignity". "We are called to love, to love", but we must avoid the risk that our charity is "hypocritical."


    14/03/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: conversion is turning away from evil and learning to do good, not in words but in "getting things done"


    " Along the path of life, of the Christian life one learns every day. You have to learn every day to do something, to be better than the day before. " " He, the Lord, names three concrete things, but there are many: seek justice, relieve the oppressed, give orphans justice, defend the cause of the widow… but concrete things."

     


    14/03/2017 - IRAN – ISRAEL

    Iranian Foreign Minister tells Netanyahu he is “falsifying Torah”


    The Israeli leader had cited the story of Purim to highlight the Iranian threat, but in the book of Esther the Persian King saves the Jews. On twitter, Iranian foreign minister spars with Netanyahu. "Who are they kidding?” replies the latter.






    Editor's choices

    VATICAN
    Pope tells young people to remember the past, to have courage in the present and hope for the future



    The Message for the 32nd World Youth Day was issued today centred on “The ‘great things’ that the Almighty accomplished’.” In her meeting with Elizabeth, Mary becomes a model. The pontiff calls on young people to avoid being couch potatoes, safe and cosy, urges them to rediscover the relationship with seniors. The Church experience is not a flash mob. The future should be experienced in a constructive way, and “the institutions of marriage, consecrated life and priestly mission” should not be devalued.


    AFGHANISTAN
    Fr. Moretti: The Little Sisters of Jesus, for 60 years " Afghan among Afghans"



    They have lived for 60 years at the service of the needy. They remained in Kabul under Soviet occupation, the Taliban control and the NATO bombing. Respected by all, even by the Taliban. This February their experience will end, according to Fr. Moretti "an example for us all."


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